Complaint filed against former NRC coordinator Prateek Hajela alleging ‘discrepancies’ in figures

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FIR Against Ex-NRC Coordinator: National Register of Citizens (NRC) Assam coordinator Hitesh Dev Sarma has filed a complaint with the CID accusing his predecessor Prateek Hajela and others of indulging in “anti-national” and criminal activities while updating the register. A senior police officer said on Friday that the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) is yet to register an FIR against the accused. The accused include several officers and data entry operators involved in this process.

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The NRC, the official record of native Indian citizens living in Assam, was updated under the supervision of the Supreme Court and the list was released on August 31, 2019, excluding over 19 lakh applicants. However, the Registrar General of India has not notified it. Prateek Hajela, a 1995 batch Indian Administrative Service officer of Assam-Meghalaya cadre, was appointed by the Supreme Court in 2013 as the state coordinator of the NRC. He was relieved of this charge on 12 November 2019. The court had ordered the transfer of Hajela from Assam to his home state of Madhya Pradesh.

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Alleged discrepancies in the process of verification of documents
An official said on condition of anonymity, “We have received a complaint from the NRC office. Due process will be followed before registering any case by CID. In the complaint, Sarma has alleged discrepancies in the process of family tree verification and verification of other documents during the process of updating the NRC. During the process of updating the citizenship document, ‘family trees’ were created to establish the accuracy of the heritage data.

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Quality check not ordered during ‘Family Tree’ reconciliation
Sarma has alleged that Hajela did not give any order for quality check during the matching of ‘Family Tree’. He said that the software used in this process also had no scope for quality check, so the officials were given full freedom to upload wrong results to serve their vested interests. The complaint said that Prateek Hajela may have deliberately bypassed the mandatory quality checks for inclusion of names of ineligible people in the NRC by ordering the use of such software, which is known to be anti-national causing damage to national security. can be seen as an act.

Already received complaints
Sarma claimed that discrepancies have been found in several other stages of the update process as well. They have demanded registration of a case accusing Hajela and others of being involved in cheating, forgery and other offences. In the past also others have given complaints against Hajela on such issues. Many petitions are also pending in the Supreme Court. Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, after assuming office on May 10, 2021, said that his government wants to re-verify 20 percent of the names in the NRC for the border districts of Assam.

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